Bonus abuse is a serious phenomenon that is often occurring in the world of online gambling. It’s defined as the process of signing up for the service multiple times using marketing offers usually intended just for new users. It is also called in other ways, such as promo abuse and bonus hunting. In this article, we will unpack this phenomenon, talk about it in depth to explain what it is, why it occurs, and find out about some ways in which to prevent it.
Bonus Abuse Explained
Bonus abuse is a process of multi-accounting, which is often constructed to target no-deposit bonuses like free spins or free cash. Any company that offers bonuses as part of their marketing strategies might be vulnerable to this kind of practice, even though the most touched ones are platforms of sports betting, casino, and even poker sites.
People who practice bonus abuse act by creating as many accounts as possible and using methods such as providing stolen information from different identity cards, which can also result in additional fraud, such as synthetic identity fraud.
Additionally, these people can also use prepaid credit card details, which are a crafty method to bypass the Know Your Customer checks that are often implemented by online gaming platforms as security checks. Of course, some fraudsters became very adept at this practice and can use these resources to implement emulators, virtual machines, and residential–like IPs to use a fresh IP address and therefore trick the security checks of a given platform.
Bonus Abuse on Gaming Platforms
Gaming platforms have often struggled with bonus abuse fraud because it is quite a new phenomenon, and systems are sometimes inept in detecting multiple accounts created by a single person. Bonus abusers are banking on this, and they often sign up to receive the same signup bonuses, thanks to the practice of registering with multiple identities. When they manage to do this, they can continue to cash out and repeat the process as long as needed.
This is a lucrative practice, where fraudsters invest many resources to scale up their bonus abuse operation. It is worth knowing that people go as far as sourcing identities through fake job adverts or even KYC forms. Of course, the way this information is sourced can vary from one place to another, but one aspect stays the same: people who decide to commit fraud go the extra mile to get some fake details to use to create multiple accounts.
Why Does This Phenomenon Occur?
This phenomenon occurs because some people want to take advantage of online casinos and exploit their promotion bonuses as many times as possible. The bigger advantage of this is to get as much money and winnings as possible due to the multiple presence of different accounts.
The worrying part is that many iGaming companies rely on bonuses because they are often used to allure new customers and provide the best possible gaming experience. These platforms offer a wide variety of bonuses, such as a welcome reload of no-deposit bonuses. Because of these bonuses, online platforms can build reliable marketing offers and grow a loyal player base.
That’s the reason why bonus abuse can be so damaging to online platforms. When fraudsters can take advantage of these offers, they trigger not only short-term damages they are putting the whole company at risk.
Why? Well, bonuses work as initial perks are given to people who are looking for the right platform to use for their games. After having used the welcome bonuses, they can continue using the same platform, and they will receive more bonuses as time goes by, such as loyalty bonuses or free spins.
If you think about it, multiple accounts, only created to get some welcome bonuses and cheat the platforms, will not provide a more significant amount of active players and will therefore damage the platform by taking bonuses without getting anything back. Because of fraudsters, online platforms are at risk of losing profits and rule-abiding players are at risk of losing enticing promotions due to widespread abuse.
How to Detect and Prevent Bonus Abuse
The first important step to detect and prevent bonus abuse is certainly to create more complex bonus rules, such as specific and strict withdrawal requirements, as well as a complex security system, there to discourage possible fraudsters from creating fake accounts. Another rapid way of discouraging this practice is to lower bonus payouts, which at least stops the business from losing money when it isn’t necessary.
Controlling and blocking risky locations is another great way to prevent fraudsters. Finding out where most of the fraudsters log in from and other territories that are famous for bonus hunting can prevent the whole fraud by simply denying access to players logging in from different locations.
Controlling suspicious IP addresses and devices is another practice that can help prevent this fraudulent practice. Artificial Intelligence can help with this, and increase the security of such platforms, to provide a safer environment for actual players while securing the platform from fraudulent behavior and attempts to take advantage of welcome bonuses with a fake identity or credit card.
This is a severe issue in online gaming, and people should be aware of it, so recognize the signs before it is too late, raise awareness against this phenomenon, and help business owners recognize the signs of bonus abuse.